Graduation information for graduate students

There are a number of things that every graduate student must do prior to graduation to assure that the graduation process goes smoothly. You may find it helpful to print this Graduation Checklist for All Graduate Students to help you along the way.

  • All students should view their academic record in DARS (accessible via MyAkron) to ensure that they have met all degree requirements at least one semester prior to graduating. Any questions pertaining to the DARS report should be directed to the student's advisor. Students should also review the Graduate School Degree Completion Requirements.
  • All students will need to complete the UA Graduate School Exit Survey.
  • All students submitting a thesis or dissertation to the Graduate School must read and act in accordance with the Guidelines for Preparing a Thesis or Dissertation (see additional information below).
  • Ph.D. students must complete the "Survey of Earned Doctorates."
  • Should you wish to walk at the graduation ceremony, you will need to RSVP to the Graduation Office

Additionally, in order to graduate, all graduate students must complete an online graduation application via My Akron by the due dates listed below to be considered for graduation or a certificate. The purpose of the application is to notify the Registrar of the student’s intent to graduate. A student cannot graduate without having completed this form. The graduation application only needs to be completed one time. Should the student need to postpone and/or reinstate a graduation, he/she simply must notify the Graduate School. Students must be fully admitted and in good standing to apply for graduation.

Graduation application due dates:

Spring Graduation: April 1
Summer Graduation: July 1
Fall Graduation: November 1

Thesis & Dissertation Information

Students required to complete a thesis or dissertation must meet the Graduate School’s formatting guidelines and deadlines. One final copy of the thesis or dissertation must be submitted electronically to OhioLINK by the final deadline. The following web links show the deadlines and formatting guidelines. There will be NO extensions to the deadline.

The following is a step-by-step guide to submitting your thesis or dissertation.

  • The deadline for final submission for fall 2016 graduates is November 14, 2016. This means you will need to create a schedule for yourself that will allow you to defend your work during the last two weeks of October to allow yourself time to make any revisions required by your committee. 
  • Before any signatures are obtained on your signature page, please send your signature page to to be sure that it is properly formatted. All signed signature pages must be submitted to the Graduate School by the final deadline.
    • The version of your document that you will upload to OhioLink will not contain signatures. 
  • The Graduate School is no longer completing "preliminary checks." Instead, upload your document to OhioLink when you're ready for format check. It will not be visible to the public, only to the graduate school's format check office. Documents are format checked in the order in which they are received for each semester. Format check may not take place until after graduation, and this will not keep a student from graduating. See "The Format Check Process" below.
  • Once you are ready to submit your document to OhioLink, you will need to convert the document to PDF and submit it electronically. Follow the procedures outlined below.
  1. Go to the OhioLINK website for electronic submission, and follow the steps to submit the “complete, finalized ETD.”
  2. Select the option for: “I am submitting: My paper’s bibliographic information, abstract, and full text.”
  3. Read the terms and click on the box to agree and continue.
  4. Select the school: University of Akron. Then click on the button “Continue to main form.”
  5. Complete “Information About Your Paper” and click on the box to save and continue.
    • When entering your name and the title of the manuscript, please use the format “An Analysis of VTOL Aircraft” DO NOT ENTER IN ALL CAPS.
    • Note: OhioLINK requires that an abstract be entered here even if one does not appear in your manuscript.
    • Note: OhioLINK allows you to select subject headings and keywords relating to your manuscript. The Graduate School highly recommends that you utilize these options. Entering keywords will allow people to find your manuscript via search engines without requiring that they know your complete title.
  6. Complete “Degree Information” and click on the box to save and continue.
    • Please complete the section for “Other Advisors/Committee Members”. Please include all advisors and committee members.
  7. Complete “Publication Information” and click on the box to save and continue.
    • OhioLINK Permissions: we recommend keeping the default of “Copyright, all rights reserved.” You may select one of the other options, but please read the links carefully before selecting one of those options.
    • Publication Delay: Manuscripts are not released for publication until after graduation. You
      will leave this as “I am not requesting any publication delay.”
      • If you will need a further delay than that, select “I am requesting that my school delay publication…” and select the length of the delay.
      • When choosing this option, a delay of publication request form must be submitted with the signature page along with the publisher’s policy. This can be found on their website.
    • UMI Publication: UMI Publication is mandatory for doctoral dissertations.
      • Doctoral Dissertations: “Upload my paper to UMI for the traditional publishing option.”
  8. Complete “Document Upload” by clicking the “Browse” button, selecting your pdf file, and clicking the “Upload Now” button.
  9. “Review and Complete Submission” and select “NO - Return to Editing” if there are errors or “YES – Submit My ETD Now” if everything is correct.
    • Note: Your paper is not submitted until you click on the “YES – Submit My ETD Now” button.
  10. A page will appear stating, “Submission Complete.”
  11. Students will be sent an email confirmation from OhioLINK that the manuscript was received and another once the Graduate School has approved it.

The Format Check Process

The Graduate School format checks each graduating student's thesis or dissertation for adherence to the Graduate School Guidelines for Preparing a Thesis or Dissertation. Be sure to use these guidelines throughout your drafting process to make your format check process much easier. The guidelines walk you through formatting each special section of your paper (table of contents, lists of tables and figures, title page, signature page, etc.) and provides the guidelines for margins, spacing, and alignment throughout your document. Some guidelines may conflict with the style guide in your department. In these cases, the Graduate School Guidelines should be followed.

Once you feel that you have formatted your document in accordance with the Guidelines to the best of your ability, it is a good idea, as mentioned above, to send it to for a preliminary review. This will allow us to catch any corrections in plenty of time before the deadline to upload your final document to OhioLink. The Format Check office will send you the pdf of your document with comments in the document for correction. You will then make the corrections, and send the newest version back for approval.

Delaying Electronic Publication of a Thesis or Dissertation.

In some circumstances, a student may wish to delay the electronic publication of a thesis or dissertation. While the University generally promotes the timely publication of theses and dissertations, it is recognized that under certain specific circumstances, a delay is warranted. These include:

  • when the student wishes to publish an article from the thesis or dissertation in a journal whose policy is not to publish anything that has already been published electronically;
  • when the student wishes to publish the thesis or dissertation with a publisher whose policy is not to publish anything that has already been published electronically and;
  • when the student is in the process of applying for a patent on research contained in the thesis or dissertation and does not wish to disclose its contents until the patent application has been filed. 

Graduate students can apply to the Graduate School for a delay in the electronic publication of a thesis or dissertation for up to a five year period (renewable). Requests must be supported by evidence from the journal or publisher to show that the publication policy requires no previous electronic publication. (For the NEOMFA program in creative writing, the advisor’s endorsement is sufficient.) Evidence of intent to file patent materials is also required. The request for delay form must be signed by the student’s thesis or dissertation advisor and must be submitted at the time of the signed signature page. The request will be reviewed by the Graduate School before it is granted. Extensions may be requested with appropriate documentation.

Click here for the Request to Delay Publication of Thesis or Dissertation form.

The Signature Page

It is a good idea to send the signature page to Format Check before you obtain any signatures to be sure that it is properly formatted. Be sure to review the guidelines when designing your signature page. Once you've obtained all but the Dean of the Graduate School's signature, you will turn the signature page into the Graduate School. Once your document is approved by Format Check, they will obtain the Graduate School Dean's signature for you, and notify you that your original signature page(s) is ready for pickup.